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Press Releases

09/06/2019

DPH Reports Three More Cases Of Severe Lung Diseases Possibly Related to Vaping Use in CT

Total of five cases reported in the state to date

Hartford The Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH) today announced that it has learned of three more Connecticut residents who were hospitalized for severe lung disease possibly related to using e-cigarette or vapor products, bringing the total to five cases under investigation in the state. All five patients became ill in July and August and have now been discharged from the hospital.

DPH is collaborating with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other state health departments to investigate the cause or causes of the illnesses. CDC has announced that more than 200 cases of severe lung disease associated with e-cigarette use are under investigation in 25 states. Patients experienced symptoms such as cough, shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever. Many patients were hospitalized and required intensive medical treatment. All patients reported using e-cigarette or vapor products and many patients reported using products that contain cannabinoid products, such as tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). The investigation has not yet identified any single substance or product that is linked to all cases.

“These illnesses are very concerning because the use of e-cigarette products is increasing in our state and nationally, particularly among our youth,” said DPH Commissioner Renée D. Coleman-Mitchell. “Some people might not be aware of the health risks associated with using these products. Anyone who has used e-cigarette products and experiences respiratory issues should seek medical care promptly because illnesses can become more severe without proper treatment.”

E-cigarette products, such as vapes, electronic nicotine delivery systems, and e-pipes, are battery-powered devices that are used to inhale aerosolized liquids. Aerosols inhaled from e-cigarette devices can contain harmful chemicals that injure the lungs. CDC recommends that youth, young adults, and pregnant women should not use e-cigarette products. For people who use e-cigarette products, the CDC recommends not buying products off of the street, and not modifying or adding any substances to the products.

Investigation of these illnesses is ongoing. More information about the investigation can be found on CDC’s webpage: https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/basic_information/e-cigarettes/severe-lung-disease.html

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